Nearly 30,000 Macs are being targeted by malicious malware


Jacob Goings

A security firm named Red Canary says that as of February 23rd, nearly 30,000 MacBooks have been infected with very suspicious malware.

One of the biggest issues with this malware (the company called it Silver Sparrow) is that its goal is very unclear. It doesn’t exhibit the behavior that regular malware does.

This malware includes a self-destruct mechanism that hasn’t been used yet, says Red Canary. It is very unclear what will trigger this self-destruct mechanism. It is unknown how the Silver Sparrow got onto these computers, but the researchers believe it is from malicious search results.

This malware has spread across 153 countries, and all that the researchers know is that is designed to deliver a payload with unknown results.

Red Canary found out that Silver Sparrow is running natively on Apple’s new M1 chips, and it is the second known malware to do so.

Red Canary says that Silver Sparrow could be a serious threat because of its forward-looking M1 chip compatibility, global reach, relatively high infection rate, and operational maturity.

Luckily, Apple revoked the developer certificates used by the malware, which will hopefully prevent any future infections. Revoking the developer certificates will also create a barrier for any existing malware to be able to take additional actions.

Red Canary Intelligence Expert Tony Lambert said that he recommends using a reputable anti-virus or anti-malware program that adds a backup to the protection that Apple already has built into the macOS operating system. “Good thing I use Windows,” says Colin Hill, a junior at Lakewood High School.